Papier Mache

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sjgarth
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Papier Mache

Postby sjgarth » Sun Jan 06, 2019 7:46 pm

Hi,
Is there any reason why papier mache is either not or is rarely used in scenery production?
I have not seen or read of anyone using it.
Am I wrong, or is there some reason?
Yours
Steve

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Ironduke
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby Ironduke » Sun Jan 06, 2019 8:22 pm

I thought about using papier mache on my current layout but then I realised I don't buy newspapers any more.
Regards
Rob

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sjgarth
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby sjgarth » Sun Jan 06, 2019 11:46 pm

:lol: :lol: :lol:
That could be an issue!
Yours
Steve

GWR_fan
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby GWR_fan » Mon Jan 07, 2019 1:08 am

sjgarth wrote:Hi,
Is there any reason why papier mache is either not or is rarely used in scenery production?
I have not seen or read of anyone using it.
Am I wrong, or is there some reason?


It takes a long time to dry and if using the flour based glues we used a generation or more ago then mould could cause problems with health. I have thought of using cheap paper hand towels with wall paper glue as an alternative to expensive plaster cloth.

Bigmet
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby Bigmet » Mon Jan 07, 2019 10:01 am

Simply that there are many alternatives now available I feel. Remains a good technique if made as a light shell, in a well ventilated space.

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luckymucklebackit
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby luckymucklebackit » Mon Jan 07, 2019 10:18 am

A useful scenic material for the beginner, also good for experimenting with if you are not sure that your plan is final, can easily be torn out and recycled. You need to make sure that you have a good substructure though, it works well over chicken wire

Jim
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sjgarth
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby sjgarth » Mon Jan 07, 2019 10:37 am

GWR_fan wrote:It takes a long time to dry and if using the flour based glues we used a generation or more ago then mould could cause problems with health. I have thought of using cheap paper hand towels with wall paper glue as an alternative to expensive plaster cloth.

I was thinking about using wallpaper paste and newspaper. The kitchen towels are a good idea.
As you say, plaster cloth is expensive.
I was thinking about using foam under-structure with papier mache to form the surface features to try and keep cost down.
Yours
Steve

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joshv8
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby joshv8 » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:45 am

The reason against papier mache is its flour based and insects will eat it.
Personally I use the toilet paper and pva method and it works great for a budget option.

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Mountain
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby Mountain » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:47 am

I have used wallpaper paste to stick newspapers in a crude paper mashé form in the past. It seems to work well except it did not like sticking to my expanded foam hills. (Expanding foam was used to save time and back then it was free as my dad often had a little left in a can when in work and they would normally chuck the can and start afresh with the next job).
I did find wallpaper paste would come unstuck in time, hence PVA may be better. Also wallpaper paste contains poisions to prevent insects from eating the wallpaper and to help stop moulds developing so ALWAYS wash your hands after using it. The advantages is that it is inexpensive and does the job.

Bigmet
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby Bigmet » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:52 am

sjgarth wrote:...plaster cloth is expensive...

The trick for UK citizens is to know someone working in an NHS orthopaedic department, and prepared to pick up the unused offcuts. (The quantity that goes in the bin is pretty spectacular. For those that don't know the original model railway version 'Modroc' was the trimmings from the factory providing medical plaster of paris bandage. I rather surprised the medical techician plastering up my father's broken arm last year, as I intercepted the part used pack and off cuts that he had opened the pedal bin for! There are some material benefits in having care responsibility for elderly relatives...)

b308
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby b308 » Mon Jan 07, 2019 12:14 pm

Modroc's cheap enough on Ebay, you don't need to resort to scrounging! I don't use PM any more because Modroc is far better, simple as that. When I did use it many decades ago i always used wallpaper paste, not flour.

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PinkNosedPenguin
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby PinkNosedPenguin » Tue Jan 08, 2019 7:59 pm

I use kitchen towel soaked in diluted PVA - not many layers required for a nice strong contour. Though I may experiment with other options on my next layout . . .

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Mountain
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby Mountain » Tue Jan 08, 2019 8:17 pm

I have read about one modeller who used a dedicated blender to make a pper maché mix which was most effective. Obviously the blender is not to be used for food if one is mixing glues into the mix. Paint can also be added if required to give the mix an earth colour.

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Bufferstop
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby Bufferstop » Tue Jan 08, 2019 10:16 pm

True papier mache is messy and slow, I use a technique which is half way between Papier mache and plaster bandage. I make contoured supports from offcuts of expanded polystyrene. Then cut up three ply brown paper postal sacks into inch and a half wide strips glued in place with 50/50 diluted PVA. Drying time is an hour or so then I add strips at right angles to the first. Three or four layers will dry into a hard shell. When it's fully dried I give it a coat of polyurethane varnish well dusted with green flock of mixed green. Once that has dried I apply static grass with my electrified tea-strainer. It's quite strong, carries the weight of a rather chubby cat and can be modified if I decide I want to put in a building, just by cutting with a craft knife.
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sjgarth
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Re: Papier Mache

Postby sjgarth » Tue Jan 08, 2019 11:38 pm

Thanks for the ideas and guidance.
I was thinking of a base layer of wood, with a build up layer of polystyrene or expanded polystyrene shapes, which will be covered in papier mache to create the final easy to paint layer.
I take on board the point of drying times and I have concerns about final appearance, so care needs to be taken.
Yours
Steve


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